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RALLY NEWS No.4 - Service - Sunday @ 14:09:15

RALLY NEWS NO.4 Service/Ennis/Sunday

1st (3) Brian OMahony/John Higgins (Impreza WRC) 40.21
2nd (1) Niall Maguire/Enda Sherry (Impreza WRC) 40.43
3rd (6) Kevin Kelleher/Ger Conway (Impreza WRC) 41.16
4th (5) Kevin Barrett/Conor Foley (Impreza WRC) 41.50
5th (9) Frank Kelly/Liam Brennan (Escort) 42.21
6th (12) Declan Gallagher/Gary Gallagher (Starlet) 43.02
7th (11) Anthony OHalloran/Charlie McEnery (Lancer N) 43.27
8th (15) Jonathan Pringle/Martin Byrne (Escort) 43.37
9th (10) Shane Maguire/Martin McGarrity (Impreza N) 43.54
10th (7) Colm Murphy/Don Montgomery (Impreza N) 44.25

Having led the rally for the first 3 stages Tralee man Thomas Fitzmaurice had a problem with his Subaru gearbox on stage 4 that cost him some time and allowed Brian OMahony into the lead. Worse was to follow for Fitzmaurice as his car had transmission trouble on stage 5. He stopped in the stage and tried to reverse but the car slipped off the road into a ditch and got stuck. Also out is Roy White/James OBrien. They held 6th place after SS3 but their MG S2000 has encountered a mechanical problem on stage 4 and there is no sign of any times coming in for them.

Colm Murphy was up to joint 7th o/a after SS3 and was leading Group N but he has dropped several minutes and is now 10th. Anthony OHalloran now leads GpN. Colm Murphy’s problem seemed to centre around the battery on his Impreza.

If Brian OMahony can now stay on course it means that the battle for the Dunlop Champion’s title will go right down to the wire on the final rally, the Donegal Harvest. Niall Maguire had a fastest time through stage 5 but in overall terms is making no big impression on rally leader OMahony. In similar terms Kevin Kelleher in 3rd is not making any inroads into the times of the two cars in front. Kevin Barrett maintains his steady pace and reports no real problems. Frank Kelly in 5th continues to lead the Escort category although interestingly Declan Gallagher in his rear wheel drive Starlet equalled Frank’s time through stage 5.

Looking down the list after stage 4 Seamus Connolly leads class 11 in his Corolla TC. Stephen Carey continues to lead cl.3 in his Civic. New York visitor Enda McCormack is the top runner in class 15.

On Wales Rally GB Latvala continues to lead with just 1 stage remaining through Walters Arena. Petter Solberg was fastest through SS17 to move back into 2nd o/a but then Loeb was quickest on 18 so he is now 2nd by 0.1 of a second from Petter. Further news – Hirvonen fastest on final stage. Latvala has won the rally. Loeb was .8 of a second faster than Petter so Loeb finishes 2nd and Petter 3rd. Two Fords on the podium at last! Craig Breen was 13th o/a and has won SWRC which is brilliant for the Waterford man and his Killarney co driver Paul Nagle.

More news later: BRIAN & LIZ PATTERSON www.rallynews.net Follow RallyNews on Twitter @PaceNotes or @Real_RallyNews

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